IT Benchmarking, productivity metrics, and data from Cutter’s ongoing industry research.

Sep 252009

The Cutter Benchmark Review team is putting together an issue on IT’s Role in Reverse Logistics, and that means it’s survey time. The topic was new to me, so I went to the web for some education and inspiration. And bam! I found this great piece in Modern Materials Handling. In a nutshell, I learned that effectively dealing with returned materials offers companies the opportunity to bolster customer satisfaction, increase profit margins through resale (through channels like eBay or Craigslist), minimize inventory carrying costs and reduce their impact on the environment. The strategic use of IT resources can be the difference between success and failure in this endeavor. In fact, state-of-the-art technology and applying the Read more

Sep 172009

Last spring, when Gabe Piccoli, Rick Watson and Emily Ryan looked at whether green IT/IS was a priority for organizations, they found some good news: their survey for Cutter Benchmark Review uncovered that more than one-third of companies in the US, and over half of European companies had a long-term strategy in place for reducing their environmental footprints. Environmental responsibilities are increasingly becoming a mandatory part of business strategies. The pressure not only comes from growing customer demand for green products and processes, but it’s also coming from industry-specific government regulations that enforce precise collection, management, and reporting of carbon data. So now Gabe, this time along with Cutter Senior Consultant Bhuvan Unhelkar and Brian Read more

Sep 032009

Cutter recently conducted a survey of than 100 software development organizations to study how companies deal with maintenance and other software support issues. The survey, which was analyzed by Senior Consultant E.M (Elli) Bennatan, covered a broad range of organizations: 45% with fewer than 25 developers, 23% with between 25 and 100, and 32% with more than 100 developers (of those, 18% have more than 400). The survey also covered a fair mix of both small and larger projects: at 59% of surveyed companies, projects are typically small — fewer than 5 person-years; at 35%, they are between 5 and 20 person-years (of those, at 11%, they are between 11 and 20), while the remaining Read more

Jul 232009

Cutter Senior Consultant Bob Benson is researching how IT governance management practices are actually applied in organizations — and the effectiveness of those practices. We’re hoping you’ll let us know your opinions on this topic by participating in our survey. We’ll thank you with an immediate download of the Cutter Consortium article by Steve Andriole, New Governance vs. Organizational Terrorism“, when you complete the survey. If the IT Governance Survey isn’t a good fit for you, we’re also currently surveying on Software Project Requirements, and invite you to participate. Cutter’s constant flow of new research provides our clients with accurate forecasts about the business and technology strategies, tactics, and trends that will have an impact Read more

May 272009

IT professionals tell us anecdotally that they use a variety of personal productivity solutions — from checklists on paper to involved (and expensive) project planning software. Please take our 3-minute survey and help us get a snapshot of the current and best practices in use by IT professionals worldwide. We’ll thank you with a copy of the Executive Report The Business Technology Optimization Audit: Finding the Make Money/Save Money Zone. Please respond ASAP — this survey closes 6:00 am (Boston time) Friday, May 29.

Feb 232009
2009 Trends Research: Economy hasn't taken IT's eye off the strategy ball

Every year, the IT trends issue is one of Cutter Benchmark Review’s most popular, probably because of CBR‘s unique approach to looking at the trends. This is the fourth year expert practitioner Jeroen van Tyn and academic Dennis Adams bring their divergent experiences to the table to analyze our trends survey. As always, they’ve delivered some surprises. According to van Tyn, the recent downward economic spiral has predictably put IT in the spotlight as a target for cost reduction, but “Despite the increased pressure to save money, IT organizations are not just running for the tall grass. Combined with rather predictable cost-saving measures, we see solid trends toward maintaining strategic focus over the long haul. Read more

Jan 142009

My colleague, Kim Leonard, highlighted some of the first analyses of Cutter’s recent study on software estimation back in November (Software estimation “a tough beast to control“). Elli Bennatan‘s analysis is ongoing; here are some of the latest highlights: In 2002, the most common remedy for schedule problems was overtime. Now, six years later, a Cutter Consortium survey has revealed some interesting news: when projects run into scheduling problems, the two most common remedies are extending the schedule and reducing functionality, with overtime relegated to third place, followed by adding staff. … To a large degree, the shift away from adding overtime indicates a positive change in culture. Organizational behavior is improving!” Previous Cutter Consortium Read more